Openings and Closings

Catacombs closes in Boulder, but the memories will remain

Hidden under the fancy Hotel Boulderado, literally below tourists dining on the patio was one of the best college bars Boulder had to offer -- Catacombs. Sadly, no new college kids will get to wander to that often overlooked end of 13th Street, stumble down the windy stairs and explore the cave-like space as Catacombs has closed its doors for good. Though it was slightly out of the way -- and the maze-like layout meant it was impossible to find, or hear, anyone -- Catacombs will always be a big part of my memories at the University of Colorado.

The place was unusual because of its size -- one of the biggest bars around Pearl Street -- and because it could be a different bar on any given night. Sometimes it was filled with college students, sometimes with Boulderado guests or sometimes with party guests from a nearby wedding. When you walked in, the front bar made it feel like a British pub, the next room had karaoke and a dance floor. Another room was full of pool tables, another felt like a lounge. Whatever mood you were in, Catacombs offered a place, and of course, a good drink.

From the $3 Long Island iced teas to Shiner on tap (one of this Texan's favorites) to the birthday special, "aborted fetus," that provided a weird shot for a perfectly weird bar, Catacombs was always reliable and well within a college student's tight budget.

So, goodbye Catacombs, and thank you. Thank you for the nights spent watching sports from the only booth that faced a TV. Thank you for the quick trips in to celebrate someone's birthday. Thank you for the time my roommate got kicked out for fighting. Thank you for the time my table got bombarded by drunk wedding guests who couldn't take a hint. Thank you for the times I witnessed some truly embarrassing karaoke. Thank you for all the games of giant Jenga I lost and the games of pool I won. Thank you for the years of laughing at confused and afraid Boulderado guests who didn't know it was a college bar. Thank you for being a place I could get a drink that reminded me of home. Thank you for always being a part of my home in Boulder.

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Isa Jones is an editor in Jackson Hole; her writing has appeared all over the Internet and occasionally in print.
Contact: Isa Jones